Page 2 - Descendants of George Duffus of Banff


Married Eugene Rogers Barry on the 19th June 1872, at St. Francis Church Melbourne, aged 25 years. From notes we have and from newspaper cuttings, the Barry family were quite closely associated with Duffus family and kept a good relationship with them. In fact, Eugene was noted on the Death Certificate of James as next of kin and his address was given as Canterbury Rd., Albert Park.

Margaret and Eugene, who was a Law Clerk, seem to have lived around Albert Park for some time. Unfortunately, we have not been able to make contact at the time of this entry. They had four children. Margaret Viva Stella (1876) married Richard Engelbrecht of South Australia in 1898. She dropped her first name and was known to the family as Viva, but on her tombstone she is listed as Margaret. There is one known child who never married. Eugene Howard Vaughan (1877) married Frances Ethel Doran in 1907. It is not known if there were any children. Reginald Gilbert (1883-1900) Albert Park, and Cyril Augustus (1884) married Lucy Amelia Crabtree. There are three known children. Margaret Matilda Duffus died on 21 May 1919 and Eugene Rogers Barry died 15th March 1933.


Was the first child of James and Margaret to be born in Victoria, so he too would have known some of the unusual events in the first few years in Yambuk. Having quite a large number of brothers and sisters, there would have been many adventures experienced. As a young man, he joined his parents in their established business in Koroit. He then entered an auctioneering firm with his brother, Denis, before acquiring the freehold to the Koroit hotel. From there, James Francis was to enter into the world of politics, where he stayed for forty years as M.L.A. for the area. It is interesting to note, that he lost his seat on his stand for 'Free Education in Catholic Schools' when all of the family were 'Staunch Catholics' and the area around was basically Catholic.

The children in the family were warned by their father NOT to enter the world of politics, but to seek their living in the grocery business. "It was much easier". Some of them did just that and the Duffus name was known in some parts of Victoria for their stores. James Francis was to marry Ellen O'Bryan of Indented Heads in 1880. From this union there were 11 children, so, between his work and his big family, James and Ellen were kept quite busy. Nevertheless they made quite an impression in the area and were well known and respected by all.

Francis James, the eldest child, married Mary Ellen McDonald in 1890 of Camperdown, in Koroit in 1907.

Edward Patrick (Ted) never married.

Fredrick married but no additional information known.

Margaret Mary (Maggie) married Daniel Patrick McGrath in 1917. They had nine children.

Catherine Agnes (Kit) married William Henry Craven in Koroit in 1912. They had eight children.

Herbert Lawrence (Bert) never married. Leslie Stephen married and had two children.

Leonard Alphonso (Len) married Millicent Kate Nelson and had ten children.

Harold Ambrose (Boliver) married Mary Olive Schmitt or Smith. Boliver married three times and had four children.

Emaline Augustine died an infant.


Was born in Belfast Victoria and died as an Infant.

5. DENIS CORNELIUS DUFFUS (1857-1939) ,. Was born on June 5th, 1857 and conducted the general store and auctioneering business with his brothers in Koroit then took up a farm at Crossley, between Koroit and Port Fairy called, "Ocean View".

Denis Cornelius (Dent) married Joanna Matilda (filly) Stelling at St. Joseph's Church, Warrnambool on April 2nd 1886, the daughter of Nicolus Christian Theodor Stelling, (born at Altona near Hamburg, Germany on February 22nd 1832) and of Mary (Nee) Quinlan, an emigrant from Ireland.

Tilly Duffus had two brothers, Jeramiah and Theordor, both of whom died in late teens or early twenties. Nicolus Stelling is said to have walked out of Germany through Switzerland to Italy to avoid the Kaizer's military conscription. He was a good rifleman winning 'Best Shot Warrnambool Rifle Company 1851' prize when the colonies expected an invasion from Russia.

Denis Cornelius (Dent) and Matilda (filly) Duffus had one child, a son, Denis Barthold John Duffus (Bart) born on 8th October 1901.

At the end of the first world war, "Dent" and "filly" and son "Bart" moved to Melbourne, firstly to Fairfield Avenue, Hawthorn then to Leura Grove, Hawthorn, where a niece of Dent's, Irene Paterson, lived with them for many years. They donated a stained glass window in the baptistery of Our Lady of Victories, Camberwell, dedicated to Tilly's parents, Theodor and Mary Stelling.

Shortly before the first world war, Dent, collapsed while fighting a bush fire. He was advised by his doctor to retire from the farm at Crossley - "Ocean View" - which he sold to people by the name of Bushell. Dent's collapse must have been from heat exhaustion as he lived on to the ripe old age of 80 years.

After a short retirement to Warrnambool, Dent took up auctioneering again and was renowned for his travailing to distant sales in the western district by buggy, with very good trotters.

Joanna Matilda Duffus died 7th August 1938. Both are buried at a family vault at Tower Hill near Koroit with some of the Gleeson family.

Bart started his education at the convent school in Warrnambool where he was a member of the premier football team of 1915 and the team that held the Secondary Schools football Shield of 1917. In 1918, he was in Bro. Fagan's Intermediate class. Bart Duffus attended Scotts Business College, Melbourne and qualified as a woolclasser after which he 'jackerooed' with Edmund J. Naugton, the owner of several stations. He became his travailing companion and top woolclasser and some times managed various stations.

Bart was manager of "Maragle" station, on Saturday 21st March, 1931. He would have been one of the last people to hear the ill-fated "Southern Cross" Avro Fokker air liner as it droned on to crash in the mist in its vain attempt to return to Sydney on that day . The wreckage of the plane was not found until 27 years later when, on Sunday 26th October 1958, a carpenter on the Snowy Mountains Scheme, Tom Sonter, stumbled upon its twisted metal.

When the depression began, Bart returned to the wool stores in Melbourne until William Haughton and Co. closed down. He then went farming at Smithfield near Deniliquin but it was not successful. Later, he bought the property "Range View" at Boorhaman, north of Wangaratta in north east Victoria.

Bart married a Melbourne girl, Victoria Edith Pottage on 6th August 1932 at St. Columban's Church, Elwood. Her father, Major William Victor Pottage had been born at Poona in India where his father served in the British Army. Mrs. Pottage had come from Echuca, Victoria. Bart and Victoria settled at "Range View", Boorhaman and pursued a farming life running sheep, fattening lambs, growing wheat and oats. Bart's wool classing skills and general drive put the shearing shed and sheep clip in great demand, handling many of the district's sheep. Bart and Victoria retired into Alexander Court, Wangaratta in January 1963. Bart was still taking an active interest in the farm until he suffered a severe stroke in 1966. He died on 14th April 1970. Victoria Duffus continued to live at Alexander Court until her death on 7th December 1976. Both are buried in Wangaratta Lawn Cemetery.

Bart and Victoria Duffus had three sons; John, Edmond and Allan.

John Denis was born September 26th 1933 and educated at Boorhaman State School and then at Xavier College, Kew from 1944-1951. He then studied pharmacy, qualifying in 1954. He then entered Corpus Christi College, Werribee, to study for the priesthood. Fr. John Duffus was ordained at St. Patrick's Wangaratta on 21st July, 1962 by the Most Rev. Dr. Bernard Stewart, Bishop of Sandhurst. Fr. John Duffus was curate at Kennington, Benalla and Wangaratta after which he spent seven years teaching at Alexeshafen and Port Moresby seminaries in New Guinea before studying again in Washington, D.C., U.S.A. and Rome before returning to be Bishop Stewards secretary and assistant. When Bishop Slewart retired, Fr. John Duffus continued to assist Bishop Noel Daley in the same position at the Sacred Heart Cathedral, Bendigo.

Fr. John Duffus was elevated to the title of Monsignor "Prothonotary Apostolic" by Pope John Paul II on Sunday, 7th July, 1991.

Edmond Barthold Duffus was born 27th January, 1936 and was educated at Boorhaman State School and Xavier College, Kew from 1946 to 1952, resuming to "Range View" to take up farming with his father. Briefly, he studied woolclassing at Dookie College and Wangaratta Technical College.

Edmond married Leila Ann Klemm of "Eumana" Londrigan, on 20th October 1962. Fr. John Duffus was the celebrant at Xavier College Chapel, Kew. He has been a Wangaratta Shire councillor since 1984 and its President in 1986-7.

Edmond and Leila built a home "Wahroonga" at the Peechelba East end of the Boorhaman property and in 1991 are still farming. They have two children, Andrew and Phillipa.

Andrew Frances Duffus born 17th March 1967 was educated at Boorhaman Primary School, Galen College, Wangaratta and Xavier College, Kew. On returning to the property, Andrew qualified as a professional woolclasser and won the Farm Grains "Apprentice of Victoria of the Year in 1989."

Philippa Jayne Duffus was born 31st July 1969 and was educated at Boorhaman primary school, Galen College, Wangaratta and Presentation College, Windsor. She qualified as a dental nurse in 1988.

Allan James Duffus was born December 27th 1938. After finishing his education at Boorhaman State School and Xavier College, Kew, ho returned to "Range View" to farm with his father Bart and brother Edmond. He marked Elizabeth Fink on 9th February 1963 at St. Patrick's Wangaratta and moved into the homestead "Range View". Allan and Mary Duffus have six children.

Terdse Marie Duffus born 19th February, 1964, educated Boorhaman primary school and Mt. St. Erin College, Wagga Wagga, and has qualified as a dental hygienist.

Mark James Duffus, born 20th June, 1965, qualified as a Surveyor from N.S.W. University 1991.

Christopher John Duffus, born 13th November, 1967, has worked at various occupations in the building, insurance and hospitality trades in Australia and overseas.

Susanne Louise Duffus born 30th November, 1968 has worked in insurance and computing and married Trevor Ion on March 9th, 1991 and is living in Wagga Wagga.

Jason John Duffus was born 30th April, 1977, and is still attending school.

Rachael Celinda Duffus was born 31st October, 1978 and attends Mt. St. Erin College, Wagga Wagga.

Allan and Mary were in partnership with Edmond and Leila on the property at Boorhaman until 1974 when the partnership was dissolved and Allan and Mary moved to Wagga Wagga.

Allan studied Accounting and Business management at the Riverina College and qualified remaining on to lecture in the same subjects.

Allan has been an exchange lecturer at Colorado State University, U.S.A., where he had his family for some time and also lectured at a seminar in Hong Kong. Allan sold part of "Range View" including the homestead and 640 acres in October 1982.


Married Lizzie Mary Gallagher in 1888 somewhere in Victoria. No one seems to know anything about them after that. It was thought that they went to N.S.W. to live.

7. ELIZABETH DUFFUS (1862-1909)

The second daughter married Patrick Cornelius Gleeson of Limerick, Ireland, in Port Fairy in 1886. Whether he was related is unknown and therefore little is known of their family of four children, who were

Margaret May 1888 dec. 1913 and never married. Eileen Mary 1889 dec. 1890 no further knowledge Inez Elizabeth 1891, no knowledge yet. Mary Veronica 1896, Dec. 1910.


Was the third daughter and second last child of Margaret and James. Agnes married James David Patterson and they became the parents of two daughters - Olive and Irene Veronica. Agnes, James and baby Olive became the victims of a 'flu' epidemic at the turn of the century and died young. Irene, or Rene as she was known all her life, was left an orphan and taken by Uncle Dent and Auntie Tilly, Mr. and Mrs. D.C. Duffus, to live with them. Rene remained with them in Camberwell until their deaths which occurred within a few months of each other in 1938. Rene continued to live in Camberwell in St. Helen's Road until her own death. She kept in touch with all Duffus relatives by making frequent short visits to Koroit, Moonee Ponds and Ascot Vale. She was always grateful to Auntie Tillie and Uncle Dent for the home they gave her for so many years, but, she felt to the end of her life, the loss of her own immediate family, for though quite young at the time of their premature deaths, she could remember them.


Patrick Kevin Charles was the only member of the Duffus family to be born in Koroit and he was to remain all his life in the town. He was fifteen years of age when his father died. He went to Xavier College, Kew, for a few years in company with his Gleeson cousins, and it seems that the opportunities to play football in the Xavier team were the only inducements that kept him there. He was homesick and felt his father's sudden death very much. However, his mother expected him to earn his own living so he went with one of the Gleeson cousins to work on the Kalgoorlie gold fields for a few years. Eventually, he returned to Koroit and with some extra financial assistance from the family coffers, he opened a general store opposite the Koroit Hotel. He conducted a successful business there until his death in 1945, one hundred years after the birth of his eldest brother in Port Macquarie.

Patrick, called Paddy, married Mary Jane Smith of Emerald Hill, the South Melbourne of today. As far as is known, the Smith family were the proprietors of the Victoria Hotel, still a prominent landmark on the comer of Beaconsfield Pde., and Victoria Ave., South Melbourne and it is there that the couple's wedding breakfast was held. The couple met through Mary Jane's brother when he was the licensee of the Commercial Hotel in Koroit. After their marriage, Paddy and Min - she was never called Mary Jane - settled in their new home in Commercial Place and in time became the happy parents of two boys and two girls. - James Joseph, May (died after a few months from convulsions), John Vincent and Margaret Sarah.

Paddy's wife was a beautiful-looking woman with an excellent dress-sense. With these assets, she assumed the role of being responsible for the ladies fashion department in their general store. She made a journey to Melbourne, at least annually, to buy the necessary garments at warehouses in Flinders Lane. It was during one of these business trips that she renewed her friendship with her girlhood friend, Annie Kennett, great-aunt of Jeff Kennett, current leader of the Victorian Liberal Party. Annie was married and living in Brunswick, and soon visits between the two families were taking place in Melbourne and in Koroit. Thus it was that James Joseph, known as Joe, met Angela, the eldest daughter of Annie, his mother's girlhood friend. In 1921, Joe married Ann Angela Cramp and they set up their home in Moonee Ponds where they raised their two children, Desmond Joseph and Joan Angela. Like thousands of their fellow Australians, they struggled with courage and determination against the heavy odds of the great Depression and World War II. Although their early years were fraught with financial difficulties, they were able to spend their latter years in comparative comfort. These latter years were made memorable by a six months tour overseas during which very special visits were made to the village of Duffus in Scotland and to Gleeson territory in Ireland.

Joe and Angela's son, Des, married Patricia Muldowney and they, too, remained in Moonee Ponds. In time, they became the proud parents of six lovely children Mary Josephine, Anthony Patrick, Monica Joan, Vincent Thomas, Laurence Bernard and Robert Andrew.

Joe and Angela's daughter, Joan, became a religious sister in the order of the Faithful Companions of Jesus (F.C.J.) and for many years was at Genazzano Convent, Kew, the school to which Patrick Gleeson sent his two daughters, Mary and Evelyn (Lizzie) in 1887. The school possesses a very lovely chapel which was designed, in the early "seventies", to highlight a beautiful "Way of the Cross", worked in beaten bronze. This work of art was the memorial gift of Doctor Newman and his son Frank, in memory of their wife and mother, Mary Gleeson, who had died as a young woman from the 'flu' in 1917. In 1974, the day that the new chapel was blessed and opened, two people met for the first time, who, unknown to each other until that occasion, were Gleeson descendants. They were, Genevieve Durrant, the grand-daughter of Edmond Gleeson and Joan Duffus, the great grand-daughter of Margaret (Gleeson) Duffus.

Let us now return to the family of Patrick and Min (Mary Jane) Duffus. Their third child was John Vincent, always known as Vince. He met his future wife when she was staying a the Koroit Hotel. After his marriage with Kathleen McDonnell, they settled in Ascot Vale and so the two brothers lived quite close to each other.

Vince and Kath had one daughter, Mary Ursula. At one period of time during the great Depression, Joe, Vince, Kath and baby Mary went to Merriwagga, an area between Wagga and Junee, to take over a wheat farm at a time when there was no irrigation in that area. Their first crop looked very promising, but no rain fell. Together, with their neighbours, they watched their hard work shrivel up before their eyes and with diminished finances and no help, they returned to Melbourne to struggle valiantly against the hardships of the nineteen-thirties until a brighter future dawned.

Vince died very suddenly and never had the joy of taking his beloved Mary to the altar to place her in the hands of her future husband, Robert Osborne Crombie. His brother, Joe, had that honour. After their marriage, Mary and Robert, always known as Bill, made their home in Roland Ave., Strathmore, which they shared with Kath to the end of her long life. Mary and Bill were the proud parents of five children, three sons and two daughters: Sean Robert, Jenifer Mary, Paul Vincent, Anne Majella and Damien Peter.

Finally, we come to Patrick Charles' last child, Margaret Sarah, but known in her family and in Koroit as "Doll" Duffus. She never married and worked with her father in the store and thus she was well known in the area. During her life, as towards the end of her father's life, she did much of the business including ordering supplies. When he died in 1945, she stayed on in the town only for a very short time. When she left to live in Melbourne near her brothers, the Duffus presence in Koroit, dating from 1867, came to an end.

The heritage created by the union of Margaret Gleeson and James Duffus in 1845, carries on today, through their descendants, to this present generation where we continue to use family names - like James, Edmond, George, Frances, Margaret, Patrick and Denis - mixed in with the more modem names of today.

From family photographs of older generations, we are reminded of their likeness in modem generations. We are proud of these forebears and seek to know more about them. Hopefully, this modem generation will complete the research here commenced.

The Duffus Brothers. Back - Edmond, William; front - Patrick, Denis, Cornelius, James.

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